21 August 2013 - 20:22
6 questions about the future of the British Monarchy


As the world welcomes the almost 1-month old Prince George, we take this opportunity to look at 7 things about the future of the Monarchy, near and distant.

When Prince Harry marries, what would be his and his wife’s title?

origin_8724901892When Prince Harry does eventually marry, it is highly likely he’ll be given a Dukedom like his brother Prince William, Duke of Cambridge. There is some speculation about which Dukedom Prince Harry would be given with some sources reporting that the Dukedom of Sussex has actually been ‘reserved’ for the 4th-in-line. There are a whole list of possible Dukedoms available including the Dukedoms of Albany, Connaught, Clarence, and even Windsor amongst the options.

There is also the chance that a title could perhaps be withheld until the Dukedom of York becomes available (traditional title for 2nd son of the Sovereign).

What will our next 3 Kings be called on the throne?

large_5907408758Monarchs have the facility to choose their own regnal name when they come to the throne, this can be different to their own first name. Our present Queen chose to be known as Elizabeth as Queen, which was also her first name as a Princess. Her father was known as Prince Albert but chose the name George when he became King.

It is expected that the next three Kings in line to the throne (Prince Charles, Prince William and Prince George) will choose their own names as Kings because of their existing connection with the monarchy. Prince Charles is expected to reign as ‘King Charles III’, Prince William as ‘King William V’ and Prince George as ‘King George VII’. They could, of course, choose to reign under different names but as it stands, this is the most likely arrangement.

Will things be drastically different when the Prince of Wales comes to the throne?

large_5668650825When a new Monarch accedes to the throne, there can be a difficult and sensitive period during the transition which will seem strange to many, particularly because Queen Elizabeth has reigned for so long that it’s difficult to imagine anyone else as our sovereign. Prince Charles’s accession to the throne will be automatic when Queen Elizabeth II dies. Shortly after his accession, he and his wife will move into Buckingham Palace – he will be known as His Majesty The King and his wife Camilla as Her Majesty The Queen (there’s some debate as to whether she’ll assume the title of Princess Consort, though many experts denounce this suggestion as highly unlikely because of the lack of precedent for it).

Other minor things will begin to change including the cypher on post boxes (new ones being imprinted with C III R instead of E II R) and the face on banknotes and coins changing (both of these changes will happen over time and old ones will not be withdrawn from circulation, but rather old and new would circulate together with old gradually being removed in the normal way for coins and banknotes). Names such as Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs would become His Majesty’s Revenue and Customs also.

The national anthem will also change from God Save The Queen [back] to God Save The King.

What will happen if The Queen lives to celebrate 70 years on the throne?

large_2316585991On 6th February 2022, The Queen would celebrate 70 years on the throne, she would be 95-years-old. The anniversary of 70 years on the throne would be called a Platinum Jubilee and would probably be celebrated in much the same way as the Diamond Jubilee was in 2012 if not more because of the longevity of her reign.


Unless the present King of Thailand celebrates a Platinum Jubilee, Queen Elizabeth might be the first Monarch in history to celebrate (as in mark the occasion of) a Platinum Jubilee.

If he also lived that long, Prince Philip would be 100 years old, turning 101 in 2022.

Prince Charles would be 73 and Prince William would be 39.

What would happen if Prince Charles died before The Queen?

RAF Flypast over Royal Wedding of Prince William & Catherine Middleton

If Prince Charles died before The Queen then Prince William would become heir to the throne. This would mean he would become the next King after The Queen died. Whilst heir, he might be made Prince of Wales but would not qualify to become Duke of Cornwall because the Dukedom and Duchy of Cornwall are only automatically assumed by the heir to the throne who is also the eldest son of the Monarch.

It is not true that Prince Andrew would become the next King because he is currently 5th in line to the throne. Prince Charles, Prince William, Prince George and Prince Harry would have to be King or die first.

Will The Duchess of Cornwall and The Duchess of Cambridge ever be Queens?

HRH Prince Chares with HRH Camilla Duchess of Cornwall at Armed Forces Day in EdinburghYes, when Prince Charles becomes King, Camilla (known currently as the Duchess of Cornwall) will automatically become Queen Camilla (known more fully as Her Majesty The Queen or  just The Queen). There is some debate as to whether Camilla might be made Princess Consort instead of being Queen, though this argument has been rejected by many experts who say not only is there no precedent for it, but it would require an act of Parliament, meaning it would be far easier for her to be Queen.

When Prince William accedes to the throne, his wife Catherine (currently known as the Duchess of Cambridge) would be known as Her Majesty The Queen, The Queen or simply Queen Catherine.

photo credits: Glyn Lowe Photoworks, 1 Million Views, Thanks, Jason Simpson, , Michael Gwyther-Jones and Defence Images via photopin cc

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Edited by Martin

  • Bill Foley

    I don’t know if King Louis XIV of France ever celebrated a Platinum Jubilee but he reigned for 72 years. Long enough for a Platinum Jubilee. If Her Majesty does live long enough for her Platinum Jubilee (God Willing), I do not think that they would have the celebrations like they did on her 6oth. Depending on her health that might be too much stress for her.

    • CliveNgill Hicks

      I guess the french don’t count!

      • Susie Que

        Why would they?

    • robert

      I was surprised by the assertion that no monarch in history has reigned 70 years. Surely an institution that has existed throughout the world for over ten thousand years has had at least ONE to pass that milestone. If they meant British history, that is true.

  • bobby

    If and when Prince Harry becomes Duke of York (given that Prince Andrew dies before Prince Harry gets married), would Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie remain as Princess Beatrice of York and Princess Eugenie or York? Given that these two remained unmarried?

    • Royal Central

      In that circumstance, yes Princess Beatrice and Eugenie would remain as ‘of York’ as titles are held for life and aren’t necessarily affected by the death of a parent.

      • Dominic

        If perhaps the Duke of York were to have a son would the title still pass to the son ? Or would the son have to take a lesser title like earl since he is so far from the crown now ? It doesn’t make sense to me how titles like Dukedom of York can typically be for 2nd sons when the 2nd son is so likely to have his own son who inherits a title.

        • Royal Central

          No, the title would pass to Andrew’s son, who’d also be an HRH. Usually, the title holder has died heirless so the title reverts to the crown and can be issued to a new generation. Only convention says Dukedom of York is for second sons, nothing in law.

    • Susie Que

      Harry will not be given the title Duke of York, that stays with Andrew’s family

      • Amanda

        Prince Andrew doesn’t have any sons, though. If he passes away, the title becomes free because he doesn’t have a male heir to carry it on. It’s a bit archaic for today’s world, but titles can’t be passed through girls.

        • Bruce Alan Wilson

          SOME titles can; it depends on the wording of the grant.

    • robert

      Considering Andrew’s age, it would be rather odd to make Harry wait for his death to receive a dukedom. Considering the recent efforts to modernize the monarchy, perhaps a new dukedom will be created. Duke of Milton Keynes?

    • Ricky

      I hope the Duke of York’s death is a long ways off, since he’s the same age as me!

  • Susie Que

    This article is wrong, the Queen decreed that upon the marriage of Charles and Camilla, if and when he becomes King Camilla will NOT be given the title of Queen, she will get the title Princess Consort. Period.

    • Royal Central

      Firstly, The Queen did not ‘decree’ this, it was the Prince of Wales’s office that said this was ‘the intention’. Automatically, she WILL become Queen – it would require an act of Parliament to legally change her title – no such act exists.

      • Ricky

        Even if someone introduced this kind of legislation after Charles’ accession, it would still require Royal Assent if it was passed by Parliament. Although this is mostly a formality, who would dare ask Charles to sign such a document?

      • David Pollock

        It will also require and Act of Parliament for a divorcee with a living ex-spouce to ascend. Camilla’s ex is still living. This is likely why she will only get the title Princess Consort. I am prepared to be corrected on this, but this is what I understand to be fact based on talk when they got married.

        • Royal Central

          Camilla won’t ascend to the throne, Prince Charles will – Camilla will be the consort and there’s no need for legislation to effect this as her position reflects that of her husband. To my certain knowledge, the talk of ‘Princess Consort’ was based solely on trying to quell negative public opinion, not due to any legal issues.

          • MV

            The royal website http://www.royal.gov.uk/thecurrentroyalfamily/theprinceofwales/theprinceofwales.aspx states that she will have the title “Princess Consort”, not “Queen”.

          • Royal Central

            By virtue of Prince Charles’s accession to the throne, Camilla will immediately become Her Majesty The Queen – it would require an act of Parliament to change her title to Princess Consort; no such act has been passed.

          • jamiroquoi

            My understanding is that she will be the Queen, but may style herself differently. So unless Parliament acts she will be “Queen” regardless of whatever she is called in practice, be it Princess, Princess Consort, the Cheshire Cat, or a ham sandwich.

          • Bruce Alan Wilson

            That’s for a Queen Consort to be crowned, anointed, and take the Coronation Oath along with her husband. Not all Queens Consort have done such. (Queen Caroline, for example, didn’t.)

          • robert

            There is only ONE throne, irrespective of the status of the Sovereign’s consort. The ONLY member of the royal family mentioned in Law is the Sovereign. The only exception in history is when Mary II insisted on her husband (William III) being proclaimed King. By tradition, the wife of the King is deemed Queen Consort. The British Succession does not acknowledge such a thing as morganatic marriages. And rightly so.

  • Arsalan Zaman Khan

    Little old Bill is just in his early 30s. He is not likely to wait more than 2 decades to have his crown. But the question is that will Britain accept a monarch in 2035. It just might if the Royal family work well in the media to keep their image pristine. Another royal wedding will certainly help.

  • Maria Estrella Brual Militsala

    Good luck <3

  • Ricky

    In the even of Prince Charles’ death happening before the Queen’s, who would administer the Duchy of Cornwall’s affairs? Without a living Duke of Cornwall to manage things, I wondered to whom this duty would fall.

    • cdfbrown

      Like any other vacant title, it would revert to the crown.

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